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Demographic Transition over Time and Space

Longitudinal analysis and a comparison of the demographic experiences of DCs and LDCs

Factors responsible for the rapid decline of the death rate

A rapid decline of the death rates has been experienced in a number of countries. For instance, a number of developed economies such as the United States experienced a rapid decline in the death rates in the twentieth century. Such countries experienced a complete overhaul of the age distribution of mortality over the same period. Also, such countries experienced an increased in the life expectancy age. This can be compared to the second stage of the demographic transition model. Such a decline can be attributed to a number of factors. The first factor is an improvement in the provision of health services and better nutrition. It was observed that better nutrition reduced the rate at which people contacted diseases. It also improved resistance to diseases. This reduced the mortality rates by a significant level.

From a medical point of view, a reduction in the death rate can be attributed to a significant improvement in the provision of medical care services. Also, improvement in technology has contributed immensely to the quality of medical services that are being provided. The third factor that has contributed to a reduction in the mortality rates is the significant improvement in the social and environmental conditions (Lechler 27). For instance, a decline in consumption of drugs reduces the diseases that are related to drugs. This reduces the death rates that arise from such diseases. The fourth factor that has resulted in a reduction of mortality rate is the increase income. Countries across the world have focused on increasing their GDP per capita. An individual who earns a higher income can access better medical health care, live in a better environment, and adopt healthier ways of living than an individual with lower income. Finally, social programs that are organized by the state have also contributed significantly to the reduction of mortality rates. Such programs aim at educating the public on healthy ways of living (The National Bureau of Economic Research 1).

Factors responsible for a decline in the birth rate in the demographic transition

A decline in the birth is experienced in the third stage of the demographic transition model. The decline can be attributed to a number of factors. The first factor is an increase in the standing and education of women. This gives them the necessary exposure and roles in the society. This limits the amount of time they have for child rearing. Secondly, an increased access to methods of birth control can also contribute to a decline in birth rate. With contraception, women will be able to plan for their children. Thus, it eliminates the possibility of having unwanted children. Thirdly, the amount that parents invest in their children in terms of well being and education also contributes to a decline in birth rates because parents would want to give birth to a few children and give them the best. The fourth factor is an increase in income. An increase in income enables citizens to access birth control techniques. Finally, urbanization has also played a significant role in the reduction of birth control (The BBC 1).

Longitudinal analysis for England

This section will carry out an analysis of England over time. The section will entail plotting the longitudinal data for crude birth rates and crude death rates of England over time.

Crude birth rates (CBR) and Crude death rate for England’s demographic transition

Table 1.0: The table presented below shows the crude birth rate, crude death rates and population for England between 1750 and 1991.

England 1750 1800 1850 1875 1900 1925 1950 1975 1991
CBR 40 34 34 33 28 18 16 13 13
CDR 40 20 22 22 18 13 12 12 12
Population 6 9 18 26 32 40 44 49 50

Based on information in table 1.0, the demographic transition curve of England can be drawn as presented below.

The demographic transition model of England.
Figure 1.0: The demographic transition model of England. Source of graph – self drawn.

The graph presented above shows the four stages of the demographic transition model of England.

Longitudinal analysis for England and India

This section will carry out an analysis of India over time. The section will entail plotting the longitudinal data for crude birth rates and crude death rates of England and India over time.

Crude birth rates (CBR) and crude death rate for both England and India

Table 1.1: The table presented below shows the crude birth rate, crude death rates and population of England and India.

England and India 1750 1800 1850 1875 1900 1925 1950 1975 1991
CBR India 49 48 46 45 40 41 41 33 29
CDR India 43 47 36 31 27 25 19 14 10
CBR England 40 34 34 33 28 18 16 13 13
CDR England 40 20 22 22 18 13 12 12 12

Based on information in table 1.1, the CBR and CDR of both England and India are presented in the graph below

Crude birth rate and crude death rate of England and India.
Figure 1.1: Crude birth rate and crude death rate of England and India. Source of graph – self drawn.

The graph presented above shows the crude birth rate and the crude death rate of both England and India.

Discussion

The difference in the speed at which the death rate declines in England and India

Based on the graphs presented above, it can be observed that the speed at which death rates decline in India is higher than the speed in England. In the graph, it can be observed that the crude death rate in higher starts at a high level (43) than England (40). However, at the end of the period, the death rate in India (10) is lower than the death rate in England (12). The difference in the speed of decline of death rate can be attributed to a number of factors. The first major factor is the level of development of the two countries. It can be observed that the level of development of India is lower than England. Thus, the rapid decline in the death rate was experienced earlier in England than in India. The second factor that can explain the rapid decline is the difference in the response rate of the strategies implemented to reduce death rates. Thus, it can be observed that the policies put in place to mitigate death rates are more efficient in India than England.

The difference in the rates of natural increase (NRI) in the two countries

Under the demographic transition model analysis, NRI is the difference between the crude birth rate and the crude death rate. The table presented below shows the NRI for both India and England.

Table 1.2 – NRI of both England and India.

England and India 1750 1800 1850 1875 1900 1925 1950 1975 1991
NRI – India 6 1 10 14 13 16 22 19 19
NRI – England 0 14 12 11 10 5 4 1 1

The information in table 1.2 above can be presented in a graph as shown below.

NRI of both England and India.
Figure 1.2 – NRI of both England and India. Source of graph – self drawn.

Based on the graph and table presented above, it can be observed that there is a general increase in the rate of natural increase in India while on the other hand there is a general decline in the rate of natural increase in England. This can be an indication that there is a general increase in the rate of population of India while on the other hand it may indicate that there is a general decline in the population of England.

Population of England and India over time

The table presented below shows the population data of England and India.

Table 1.4: Population data.

Population 1750 1800 1850 1875 1900 1925 1950 1975 1991
India 252 251 278 318 361 439 348 684 912
England 6 9 18 26 32 40 44 49 50

The above information can be presented in a graph as shown below.

Population of England and India.
Figure 1.3: Population of England and India. Source of graph – self drawn.

From the graph presented above, it can be observed that the population of India is high and increasing at a higher rate than the population of England.

Discussion on the differences between England and India at each of the four stages of the demographic transition

The first stage in the case of England is characterized by a high rate of decline of both the birth rate and death rate. In the graph presented above, it occurs between 1750 and 1800. Population at this stage is increasing at a slow rate. In the case of India, the first stage is characterized by a low rate of decline of the crude birth rate and an increase in the crude death rate. Further, it can be observed that there is no change in population at this stage. The second stage occurs between 1800 and 1875. At this stage, there seems to be no change in the birth rate and death rate in the case of England. The curve for the two graphs is fairly flat at this stage. Also, it can be observed that the population is increasing at an increasing rate. In the case of India, it can be observed that the both the crude birth rate and crude death rate are decreasing gradually with the rate of decline of the crude death rate being higher than the speed of decline of birth rate. The population at this stage can be seen to be increasing at a slow pace.

The third stage occurs between 1875 and 1975. In England, the stage is characterized by a rapid decline in both the birth rate and the death rate. However, it can be observed that the rate of decline of birth rate is higher than the rate of decline of the death rate. Also, it can be observed that the population is increasing at a decreasing rate. In the case of India, it can be observed that there is a rapid decline in the crude death rate with no change in the crude birth rate. It can also be observed that the population at this stage is declining. The final stage, in the case of England, is characterized by no change in both the birth rate and death rate. Low levels of both the birth rate and death rate can be observed. At this stage, the birth rate can tumble below replacement level and this may result in a decline in the rate of population growth. This explains why the slow growth in the population rate is observed at this stage. The trend in the graph of England depicts the demographic transition model for a developed country. In the case of India, it can be observed that both the death rate and birth rate are declining at a rapid rate. Also, the birth rate is much higher than the death rate. This results in a high population growth as observed in figure 1.3. The trend in India depicts the demographic transition model for a developing country.

Cross-sectional analysis: Can a country pass through the demographic transition without experiencing economic development?

Graphs of CBR, CDR and GDP per capita for various countries

The graph presented below shows the cross-section analysis of the demographic transition model for various countries that are in different stages of development. The graph is drawn based on the data provided in appendix 1.

Cross-sectional analysis of the demographic transition model for various countries.
Figure 1.4: Cross-sectional analysis of the demographic transition model for various countries.

Smoothing of the curves for CBRs and CDRs

The graph presented below shows the smooth curves for CBR and CDR for the various countries.

Smooth curves for cross-sectional analysis of the demographic transition model for various countries.
Figure 1.5: Smooth curves for cross-sectional analysis of the demographic transition model for various countries.

Division of the graph into the different stages of the demographic transition

The graph presented below shows the various stages in the demographic transition model for the various countries. A sample of 29 countries is used to develop the model.

The stages of the cross-sectional analysis of the demographic transition model.
Figure 1.6: The stages of the cross-sectional analysis of the demographic transition model.

Discussion on how well the demographic transition model fits the cross-sectional data

From the definition, the demographic transition model shows the variations in the population of a given country over time. Specifically, the model focuses on the impact of birth rates and death rate on the variations of population. In the model, as a country moves through the various stages of development, the population first broadens and then it grows thinner (Montgomery 1).

In the case of the cross-sectional demographic transition model, it can be observed that, in stage one; the crude birth rate is higher than the crude death rate. At this stage population is likely to be high because the birth rate exceeds the death rate. In the second stage, there is a rapid decline in both the death rate and birth rate. However, later in the stage, both the birth rate and death rate tend to increase rapidly. In the third stage, both the crude birth rate and crude death rate tend to decline rapidly. In the final stage, it can be observed that the crude birth rate declines while the crude death rate increases and they converge.

In the cross section model, the model widens and narrows at several points. Thus, the trend in the cross-section model does not exactly depict the trend of a demographic transition model. Thus, it can be concluded that the demographic transition model does not fit the cross-sectional data (Jokisch 43).

Works Cited

Jokisch, Sabine. The Developed World’s Demographic Transition: Implications for Fiscal Policy and the International Macroeconomy, Germany: Mohr Siebeck, 2006. Print.

Lechler, Marie. An Econometrical Analysis of the Interdependencies Between the Demographic Transition and Democracy, Germany: GRIN Verlag, 2013. Print.

Montgomery, Keith 2013, The Demographic Transition. Web.

The BBC 2013, The Demographic Transition Model. Web.

The National Bureau of Economic Research 2013, Why do Death Rates Decline? Web.

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